Ashley CC, Cheshire – 1st XI – Win Won Toss Bowl by 7 wickets
ASHLEY welcomed Winnington Park, relegated from Division 1 last year, to the Railway Field on a surprisingly warm day and both teams were presented with a hard, dry good looking wicket. ACC skipper Sibtain Baig resisted temptation to bat on a good wicket without his first choice attack available, and invited the visitors to make first use. Baig and Jake Cairns took the new ball and were immediately asking questions with aggressive fast bowling at one end and swing and seam bowling at the other. The visitors were quickly reduced to 40-4 with wickets in successive deliveries from Subs, including the prized scalp of their overseas player who registered a ton on debut last week. Johnny Wales (27) offered some resistance as the visitors dug in but once he was removed, Yasir, Faroukh and Cairns teamed up to clean up and dismiss Winnington for 92 inside 30 overs. Cairns 13-3-3-27, Baig 9-1-17-3, Faroukh 7-2-2-9 and Yasir 3-0-2-12. There were three smart grabs for Tommy Smith behind the timbers.
Andy Woods (22) and Tommy Smith (26) made short work of the opening attack, and halved the run chase for the first wicket, their second successive partnership of 40+ before Tommy was out reaching for a wide one. Woody put in an early contender for the worst ball of the season to get out. He scooped up a short pie to cover. However, not to be outdone, the Horse usurped his colleague by lifting an appalling half tracker to a juggling short mid-wicket who took 3 goes to hold onto the simplest chance in the world. Subs 927) and Cairns (17) then stroked the ball around with disdain to carry on last week’s good form, easing to a 7 wicket win to claim the 20 points for Ashley, who now sit 3rd in the table and next week travel to 6th place Bunbury.